I reviewed this book in a piece about how I spent a lazy few days in the country and the writer (whose Twitter presence as @CandyKorman is regularly entertaining) didn’t notice the review. “Serves her right for not reading your wonderful blog carefully enough!” I hear you cry. But I try to be nice, so here it is again, with a few words about one of her other books as well.
Bram Stoker’s Summer Sublet
Out in the country without TV or internet, I was lucky to have taken a copy of Candy Korman’s Bram Stoker’s Summer Sublet, a gloriously silly spin on vampire stories, set in today’s New York. Wilhelmina (obviously cursed from birth with a name like that) is recovering from the shock of finding her fiancé in flagrante with another woman and has decamped to a stranger’s house to pet-sit her dog and strangely loquacious parrot, while her now ex-fiancé enjoys the honeymoon they would have spent together in Italy. She is in an understandably emotional state – the sort of emotional state where you might easily decide that your next door neighbour is a vampire. Having another neighbour whose name is Dr Van Helsing probably doesn’t help keep her imagination in check. Or is it all her imagination? (I’m not telling – you’ll have to read it for yourself.)
Candy Korman has a lovely prose style and writes with a strong sense of place. I felt I was in New York – quite an achievement isolated in the middle of Wales. Ms Korman has written several books based around old-school monsters and I’ll definitely be reading another.
This novella is a wonderful pastiche of Poe’s writing with lots of sly (and not-so-sly) references to his stories. Like the residents of The Usher Institute for the Study of Criminal Psychopathology, it’s nuts. But, unlike the assembly of killers hidden away in the Institute, it’s nuts in a good way. A great, short, fun read.